BY BRANDON WILFORE // Nov. 16, 2017 //
Curry College men’s basketball is back and looking to build some continuity along with a culture for the 2017-2018 season.
Coming off of a 1-24 campaign in the previous season, the Colonels averaged just under 64 points a game. Which is fine as long as you hold down the fort on the other end of the court.
That wasn’t the case as they allowed 90+ points six times last season, averaging 84.8 points allowed on the season.
Head coach Matt LeVangie took over the team in 2015 and they have been 1-49 since, losing by an average of 41.5 points a game.
The Colonels have also struggled to keep a team in tact. They have only had a combined six seniors in the past two years and only have two for the 2017-2018 campaign. In addition, only seven players from last year’s squad will return this season.
But the team hopes that this year they will be able to find some continuity.
Barak Swarttz is a senior from Newton, MA who transferred last season from Elmira College in New York but he was injured and couldn’t play the entire last season.
“I think being in the leadership position as a captain, my leadership has been able to set the tone for the team academically and on the court, which has been lacking in the past in this program.” Swarttz said.
The Colonels are led by Swarttz, co-captain Louis Stein and center John Coleman as their three upperclassmen.
Another year, another young team.
Curry will again try to attack teams with an inexperienced bunch for the second year in a row as five freshman and six sophomores made the roster. All are going to be tasked with playing very important minutes down the stretch.
That sophomore class was dwindled down to six from 10 last season when they were freshman.
“With such a big sophomore class, those guys need to understand the impact they are going to have.” Swarttz mentioned when asked about how important the youth will play if they want to string some wins together this season.
The lack of on-court experience makes it an uphill battle for the Colonels in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC).
But on top of that, they get some added salt poured on the wound with a lack of size.
The Colonels will roll out a fourteen-man roster with only four players 6’4” or above.
Conference rival and perineal powerhouse Nichols will come prepared with eight guys above 6’3”.
Without enough size, Curry will be forced to shoot more from three point range, something sophomore Jared Thorpe-Johnson excelled at last season by shooting 98 times from behind the arc and burying 42% of those shots.
Curry has some good pieces to hopefully improve upon the past two abysmal seasons.
The starting five is looking like it’s going to be Stein at the point, Swarttz at the shooting guard position, Johnson at small forward, Kieran Carroll at power forward and Coleman rounding it out at the center position.
Their first game comes this Saturday Nov. 17, at the UMass Dartmouth Tournament.
Their first opponent will be Castleton University who beat the Colonels by 14 points last season, but will be without their three top contributors from a season ago.